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Staff underneath a pavilion with green plant decoration and fairy lights.


Board Officers

President - Jonathan Herman: Sr. Architectural Designer at Diebold Nixdorf 

Jonathan Herman is a proud member of Beech Creek Botanical Gardens where he frequently visits with his wife Stacie and their two young daughters Alice and Eleanor. He has a passion for design, technology, and the outdoors. Jonathan brings to the board over 15 years of experience in education, technology, and architectural design. Mr. Herman graduated from the University of Cincinnati with a B.S. in Architecture and took part in the Denmark International Study program in Copenhagen. He was a member and president of Alpha Rho Chi. He received an MBA with a Management Track from Walsh University and was inducted into Sigma Beta Delta business honorary society. In 2020 Jonathan was part of the 33rd Class of Leadership Stark County.


Vice President - Robert George: Retired Journalist from Canton Repository

Bob and his wife, Nancy, live in Canton graduated from Central Catholic High School and Kent State
University. He is retired from The Canton Repository, beginning as a reporter, and concluding his career there as wire editor and page designer. He also served eight years as editor of publications at Aultman Hospital and three years as public relations director for Blue Cross of Canton and Blue Cross of Eastern Ohio. He has been a Beech Creek volunteer for two years.

Treasurer - Melissa Zucker 

Secretary - Julie Zorn:
 Chadash, Engagement & Outreach Director

Julie Zorn came to Chadash Community Hebrew Academy in 2017 after spending 13 years in Tucson, AZ as a Jewish music specialist throughout the community and the Jewish Living and Learning Specialist at the Tucson Jewish Community Center.  Julie credits her passion for Jewish education with summers spent at Jewish resident camp as a child, and in June 2017, Julie fulfilled her dream of completing a master’s degree in Jewish education from Hebrew College with a certificate in experiential education.  Julie has won several awards in Jewish education including the Gerald and Marion Gendell Excellence in Jewish Education Award in both 2011 and in 2012, Tucson’s Coalition of Jewish Education ‘s Innovation in Jewish Education award in 2016, and Hebrew College’s Friedman Scholarship Award in Academic Achievement in 2017.  Julie is thrilled to have returned to Northeastern Ohio, where she grew up, to raise her own children, Haley and Dylan.  Julie is presently our Chadash, Engagement & Outreach Director.


Board Trustees


Allison Allsopp: Special Education Tutor, Louisville Local Schools

Josh Boerner: Network Administrator, Mac Trailer Enterprises

Robert Frato: Retired Environmental Engineer, MS/HS Educator

Robert Frato is an Environmental Engineer who specialized in water and wastewater treatment for 34 years, working for the Ohio Department of Health as an Environmental Engineer, working for industry for eleven years as a Director of Research and Development, running his own wastewater consulting engineering business and working for other consulting and environmental remediation firms. He began a second career as a teacher and has spent 17 years in middle and high schools, specializing in science and math. Robert has a Bachelors in Civil Engineering from Cleveland State, a Masters in Environmental Science from the University of Cincinnati, and attended Mount Union for his teaching courses to obtain licensure in Ohio. He serves on the Board of Beech Creek Gardens. Robert has five children and 12 grandchildren.

Diane Johnson Keller: Retired - Nationwide Insurance

Nick Morris, Ph.D: Owner/Principal Kestrel Community Solutions LLC
Nick Morris Ph.D. is the Owner/Principal of Kestrel Community Solutions, a consulting agency focused on
serving non-profit, public, and community-oriented organizations. He is currently working closely with TomTod Ideas for program evaluation, staff development, and strategic planning. His career spans K-12 education, parks and recreation management, youth development leadership, and non-profit development. Nick most recently served as the programming specialist for Arizona 4-H and as the Partner Relations Director for Arizona 4-H YouthFoundation. Additionally, Nick has served as an adjunct professor of Environmental Studies and Recreation, Parks, and Tourism Management at Kent State University for 8 years. Currently, Nick teaches Environmental Education and Sustainability. His research interests are in the areas of education for sustainability, youth development, and Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion. 

Craig Sonntag: Strategic Implementation, Klais Company, Inc

Katelyn Vannoy: Veterinarian

Mike Weeder: FedEx Manager, Operations Support
Mike grew up Northeast Ohio and currently lives in Louisville, not far from Beech Creek. He graduated from Ohio Northern University in 2007, with a bachelor’s degree in Management and Marketing. Since college Mike has worked in different sales and operational roles within the insurance and transportation industry. Today, he is the Manager of Operations Support for FedEx Custom Critical, a Certified Transportation Broker and a member of TIA’s Education Committee. In 2021, Mike graduated in the 34th class of Stark County’s Signature Leadership Program.


Keith Kaiser
Chuck McClaugherty
Gerard Mastroianni
Thomas Moushey
Dean Pugh
Todd Pugh



Executive Director: Melinda Carmichael

Education Director: Nancy Baker-Cazan

Assistant Manager & Education Assistant: Josh Kuszmaul

Marketing Director: Eric Ginanni

Horticulture Manager: Tiffany Stephens

Science Center Manger: Kim Brown

Visitor Services Director: Sarah Carmichael

Volunteer Coordinator: Christine Haddon

Gardener: David Hume

Gardener: John Minor

Facility Maintenance: Jason Stephens

Administrative Assistant: Sharon Purvis

Master Craftsman: Mark Staib

Butterfly House Supervisor: Rose Nero

Butterfly House  Assistant: Isabelle Allsopp

Butterfly House  Assistant: Ashley Pennington

Bookkeeper/ Visitor Services: Tiffany Montini

Visitor Services: Christian Carmichael

Grounds Assistant: Dylan Stephens

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